Wednesday, 30 April 2014

April Empties

I've used up the Argan Oil Shampoo + Conditioner which has helped make my hair look and feel healthy all with the added bonus of injecting some much needed moisture back into it. I thoroughly enjoyed using this pair and would buy it again except the beauty blogger in me is wanting to try different things. I've finished up another bottle of the Soap & Glory Clean On Me Shower Gel which I use as a shaving lotion as it helps get a closer shave all whilst leaving my legs extremely soft and moisturised. This will always be repurchased. I've used up a bottle of the Radox Energise Shower Gel which smelt very citrusy and lathered up nicely. I would repurchase except I've got quite the stash of shower gels to be getting through. I've finished up a bottle of Femfresh which helps keep all those intimate areas clean. This will always be repurchased.

I've finally used up this tiny bottle of Garnier Fresh Essentials Eye Make Up Remover which feels like it's lasted forever! This felt very gentle on the eyes and removed the bulk of my eye makeup but it still needed a little elbow grease. I've used up another bottle of my beloved Lacura Aqua-Complete Multi Intensive Serum which I would deem to be a dupe of Hydraluron. I will always repurchase this! Speaking of Hydraluron, I've finally finished my first tube! I'm still not sure if I understand the hype for this as I don't think it does a lot for my skin although I know that the minute I stop using it, my skin will not be happy. I've used up a pot of Superdrug Vitamin E Nourishing Night Cream which has been helping keeping my skin soft and moisturised during the night. It's very light weight on the skin and sunk in within seconds of massaging it in.

I've finished up the Tresemme Heat Defense Smooth which I feel like I've had lingering around for quite a while. This was a good heat defense and definitely did its job just I feel that my hair got used to it so it left my hair feeling slightly greasy after each use no matter how little sprayed. Another heat defense I've used up is the L'Oreal Studio Silk & Gloss Hot Straight Spray which wasn't anything special. The spray nozzle on this kept on getting blocked up so I decanted it into the Tresemme bottle and managed to finish it up. I've finished a bottle of my beloved Dove Nourishing Oil Care Leave In Conditioning & Care Spray which I spray into my hair after I've washed it to help condition it further. This will always be repurchased! I've used up the Next Mi Amor Hand & Nail Cream which I kept at Liams' just to use up for the sake of using up. It smelt okay and did moisturise my hands but apart from that, it wasn't really anything special. I've used up a pot of the Pretty Perfect Twist & Out Instant Nail Polish Remover which is a definite staple for me when it comes to removing nail varnish. You just stick your finger into the sponge, twist it around a few times and it should have removed all of your nail varnish. I will continue to repurchase this! I've finished up the No7 Stay Precise Felt Tip Eyeliner which although I did like, I felt that it dried up far too quickly. I've used up two fragrances in the form of Next Flowers and Hilary Duff With Love both of which I used up for the sake of using up as I've had them for quite a long time so I feel like they were both starting to go off. I've finally finished up the VO5 Miracle Concentrate which has been helping with my ends for quite a while now. It's a light weight oil which my hair seems to drink up instantly which helps to hydrate it.

I've used up three packs of the Skin Therapy Large Oval Cotton Wool Pads which are the only cotton wool pads I use as they're large enough for my entire face and they don't fall apart at the first sign of moisture. I've finished up a pack of No7 Beautiful Skin Quick Thinking Wipes which I use primarily to remove foundation marks off my hands/vanity and sometimes just to quickly refresh my face. I will continue repurchasing these as they by far the best wipes I've come across. Lastly, I've used up the Lush Ickle Baby Bot Bath Ballistic which helped create a very soothing atmosphere of lavender which helped to relax me. Will definitely be repurchasing!

What did you use up during April?

Monday, 28 April 2014

Argan Oil Shampoo & Conditioner

Last year, I bought a few goodies from my local 99p store which you can read about here which included the Argan Oil Shampoo and Conditioner. As I've got quite the stash of hair products, I've had to use up various things before I could even start using this duo as I'm one of those people who like to only have one duo open at a time and stick to them until I've finished them up.

The Argan Oil Shampoo + Conditioner has been specially formulated using a unique blend of ingredients to help condition and rehydrate all hair types for soft, shiny results leaving the hair more healthy and manageable after each use. On first appearances, this duo looks more expensive than what I paid for and looking at the ingredients list, argan oil is the 6th listed ingredient which means that there is more of it in there as it's higher up on the list.

From the first use, my hair instantly felt more healthier than before as it felt more nourished and rehydrated. It felt softer and looked shinier without feeling weighed down which I wasn't expecting. With continuous use, I've noticed that it feels sleeker and shinier and just looks healthy which is surprising when I use heat on it on a daily basis. Whilst I do quite like it, this makes my hair feel slightly more greasy on second day hair which never happens so for that reason alone, I won't be repurchasing.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

No7 Quick Thinking Wipes Review


For absolutely ages before I started blogging, I would always remove my makeup with a makeup wipe or two which is now considered a sin by the likes of Caroline Hirons. Whilst I do now remove my makeup using a micellar water and reserve the likes of wipes for removing foundation marks on hands etc, sometimes I just want the refreshing feel of a wipe on my face during the middle of the day. On those days, I find myself reaching for the No7 Quick Thinking Wipes.

The No7 Quick Thinking Wipes contain Pro-vitamin B5 and extracts of witch hazel and fennel to not only moisturise and soften the face but to help clear pores, and leave your skin feeling smooth and fresh. Unlike other wipes, these feel very damp to the touch and aren't thin and wispy like some makeup wipes can be nor do they rip in half at the first sign of removing stubborn makeup. There have been a few occasions where I've used them to remove mascara and I can definitely vouch for its waterproof makeup removing properties!

Overall, I do really like the wipes but the main thing about these that stand out is the packaging as you don't find many makeup wipes that are resealable with a lid which helps prevent them from drying out. I've read a few reviews complaining about how dry their packs were when they first opened them which I certainly haven't encountered but that can be fixed by storing them upside down and leaving them for a few days. As these are rather pricey for makeup wipes, it's better to wait until No7 are handing out their £3 off makeup/£5 off skincare which brings the price down to only £2!

What are your favourite makeup wipes?

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub

You know that feeling you get after you've been using the same product for quite a while and you get sick of the scent/texture/results and you just want a change? Well I felt like that half way through using Soap & Glory Flake Away Body Scrub. As much as I love it, I just wanted to change it up to something else for a while so I decided to buy the Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub after reading so many rave reviews.

The Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub is unlike any other body scrub I've encountered as it smells exactly like golden syrup banana pancakes! Now tell me who doesn't want to use a body scrub that smells exactly like that?!  Scent aside, it's got a lot more chunky gritty bits in it as it contains organic cupuacu bio scrubs as well as extracts of bananas, almonds and honey which in sense makes it a lot more thick and sticky to work with. Don't let that make you think that it won't work as well as other body scrubs as this does a brilliant job at tacking any chicken skin/rough patches on the body. I find that it doesn't feel quite as drying due to it being slightly sticky in consistency which means that I don't have to use quite as much body moisturiser after using it.

I personally love scooping out a generous amount and start to buff it into wet skin, making sure that I work it all over my arms as that it where I suffer with those stubborn lumps and bumps. I then ensure that I wash it off well before using anything else as it does seem to go literally everywhere. I find that whilst it doesn't get rid of everything from the first use, over time my skin will start to feel smoother with continuous use.

Are you a fan of Soap & Glory's Breakfast Scrub?

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

VO5 Miracle Concentrate

I've been using hair oils ever since 2012 and I'm one of those people who have to use a hair oil every time I've washed my hair. My all time favourite hair oil to date is definitely the Organix Macadamia Oil but as I prefer to buy it in the states where it's cheaper, I've been opting for cheaper alternatives in particular, the VO5 Miracle Concentrate.

The VO5 Miracle Concentrate is an intensive leave-in treatment that hydrates and conditions the hair all with the help of argan oil. It comes housed in a bottle with a pipette which makes dispensing the product rather easy unlike other traditional pour style bottles. I personally prefer to apply two pipettes to my hair - one for all over and the other for my ends. As it is such a light weight oil, my hair literally drinks it up so I'm not left with my hair feeling nor looking greasy which can happen if you apply too much.

I've been using this continuously since mid October time and I've found that my hair has benefited a lot from it. You can no longer tell if I have the tell tale signs of split ends from heat damage as this oil helps mask the appearance of them by hydrating them. It also helps restore natural shine and bounce back into the hair which makes my hair feel and look a lot healthier. As I'm nearing the last few drops of this elixir, I can definitely see myself repurchasing this in the near future as it truly is one of the best budget hair oils I've used.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Samples I've Used Up 010

I've used up a sample of the Original Source Mint & Tea Tree Shower Gel which I've used many times in the past. I've always associated this particular shower gel with my Dad as he's always used it. I found that it lathered up extremely well and did the job well so I would definitely consider repurchasing in full sized. A sample that featured in my previous Samples I've Used Up post which is making another appearance is the No7 Beautiful Skin Hot Cloth Cleanser. Despite it having a strong floral scent, it didn't break me out like some overly scented products can. This left my skin feeling cleansed and fresh and I've already bought this in full size as I rather like it.

I've finally finished up my trio of Lancome samples - Teint Miracle Foundation in 005, Teint Idole Ultra 24Hr Foundation in 005 and La Base Pro Perfecting Makeup Primer. I mixed the two foundations together that gave the perfect light weight, flawless finish which is making me want to buy both of these in full size except that I've found a better full coverage duo that does exactly the same job. I found that the primer worked well when mixed with the L'Oreal Lumi Magique Pure Light Primer as it gave a good, radiant yet matte base to work with. £28.50 for a primer does seem rather expensive so I think I'll get a few more samples first before I repurchase in full size.

I've used up a pot of The Body Shop Blueberry Shower Gel. As I only got one use out of this pot, I cannot say that I would rush out and buy it as it didn't particularly wow me. It had a very subtle scent and it lathered up well, that's all I can really say. The last sample I've used up is the Lush Skin Drink Moisturiser which is the perfect moisturiser if your skin is extremely dry! I managed to get a few uses out of this pot and I tended to use it on days when I didn't fancy using any oils and I found that this sunk into my skin almost instantly and left it moisturised and hydrated. I didn't particularly like the scent of this whenever I used so for that reason, I won't be repurchasing.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Max Factor False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara

Max Factor are one of those brands that seem a little expensive for what they are and I would always much rather settle for something cheaper that I know I'll love. Before Christmas, I got colour matched to their Face Finity All Day Flawless 3 in 1 Foundation which I then bought as well as one of their mascaras and I received a free gift with purchase which included their False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara in Black/Brown.

The packaging of this is nothing special - a simple black, chunky tube with writing and a blue band around it which symbolises that it's the waterproof version. Most mascaras I've used have always been rather skinny so using something this chunky feels a little weird to say the least. The wand of this is also rather chunky and I've experienced problems with the actual bristles falling off which as you can see, I've lost quite a few. I'm not sure if it's because it may be a dodgy batch or if the continuous scrapping off excess mascara is to blame. The formula of this is very wet which means that every use, I have to scrape most of it off just to ensure that I don't clump my lashes even more. Even leaving it alone for two months hasn't dried it out and it's still just as wet as when I first used it.

Now between you and I, the name of this is an outright lie as it doesn't give false lash effect lashes. As how can false lash effect lashes look normal?! No matter how many coats, my lashes never seem to reach full, false lash looking as they just looked like I had applied one coat instead of several. This is one mascara that I will be using only on the weekends for a natural look for when I'm walking the dog or going out for a walk but I wouldn't dream of using this for work or for a night out. Max Factor, I'm thoroughly disappointed!

Monday, 14 April 2014

Botanics Rosewater Toning Spritz

I am definitely one of those people that consider toners to be a necessary step in any skincare routine and I've been using them consistently ever since I started using various skincare products. I've used the hyped up Caudalie Beauty Elixir which I liked but didn't truly like enough to repurchase so when I saw the Botanics Rosewater Toning Spritz, I decided to give it a whirl. 

The Botanics Rosewater Toning Spritz contains refreshing rosewater which helps to refresh your senses and skin. Spritz generously after cleansing to remove any last traces of makeup and to help tighten pores or use just as a refreshing spray throughout the day. I personally prefer using this in the morning as I can get a little spritz happy with this which certainly does wake me up. As far as toning properties go, I do think this helps to tighten pores in some sense as well as just leaving the skin refreshed and ready for the rest of your skincare. If you're looking for a good rosewater based toner then I highly urge you to give the Botanics Rosewater Toning Spritz a whirl.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Superdrug Vitamin E Day Cream

In addition to using the Superdrug Vitamin E Night Cream, I've been using the matching day cream from the same range. The Superdrug Vitamin E Moisturising Day Cream has been specifically developed to hydrate, nourishing and protect the skin against the sun's UVA and UVB rays all whilst providing 12-hour moisturisation with the added bonus of SPF15. It is enriched with naturally sourced Vitamin E which helps to shield the skin against environmental damage and premature skin ageing. It also contains a skin conditioning multivitamin complex which consists of vitamins A, B, F and H which when combined with horse chesnut extract, helps to care for dry skin.

I've been using this every morning for the past seven months now and I'm not entirely sure if I love it as much as I love the night cream. It has the exact same scent as the cleanser which although not everybody may like, I personally love it. It's light weight in texture but it does require a little more elbow grease to massage in. A little goes a very long way with this which means if you apply too much, which I seem to do on a regular basis, you can end up with a rather white face which leaves bits all over. Whilst it claims to provide 12-hour moisturisation, I don't think it does as although my skin does feel soft to the touch after applying it, it can feel a little dry after a few hours after applying it.

I know that SPF15 is very low especially when we're now getting into spring/summer where I will require something a little higher but I think it's a good place to start especially when the UK lacks in good quality, budget facial moisturisers with SPF20+ in them. If you know any or have used any, please recommend them below as for the time being, I'll make do with this until I go to America where I'll be picking up both SPF30 and SPF50.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge Review

I've never been one for sponges and have always opted for using brushes or my fingers if I was that desperate. So when Real Techniques brought out their Miracle Complexion Sponge, I was intrigued by it despite there being a lot of love it/hate it hype surrounding it. It was only until I was having a splurge just before Christmas that I finally picked it up and have been putting it to the test ever since.

The sponge itself is designed to be used either dampo or dry to apply, blend and buff in your base. There's a domed end for all over application, flat edges and sides for larger areas and a tip to get in to all the nooks and crannies and I must admit, the shape truly does work as you can swap and move it about as you please depending on your need. The function of the sponge was a little hard to get to grips with as spreading the product is limited and the exercise of tapping/bouncing it in caused elbow ache at first whereas now I have perfected the art and can get my base down in under two minutes flat.

I've tried it with various foundations including Estee Lauder Double Wear and it works perfectly well with it albeit it looking a little caked on around the nose area which a little blending would fix in a jiffy. I've also found the best way of using the sponge is simply by spraying a little water/setting spray instead of fully submerging it in water and then start wring it out. When I first used it, I did just very that and I found that the foundation sat on my face and remained tacky for about an hour or so which wasn't very appealing whereas now when I spray a little setting spray on it, foundation blends out beautifully and sets within seconds of applying.

It's gotten to the point where I've had to buy a new one as the constant washing/rewashing of it means that there are times that I cannot use it and have to resort to using brushes again hence why the old one looks a little worse for wear and was still damp when I took the picture..

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Lush Bunch of Carrots

Back in the day, I used to be an avid Lush user and every bath was a Lush bath. It got to the point where my obsession became ridiculous and I stopped both buying and using their products. As I'm now at that point where I'm bored of boring Radox baths, I've started to rekindle my obsession for Lush starting with their Bunch Of Carrots which I've been using for the past few weeks or so.

As the name suggests, these look exactly like Carrots but unlike the real thing, these are a much sweeter version. They smell rather sweet with buchu, lemon and grapefruit oils which fills the room with a tropical, uplifting scent. In order to use, you simply take one from the bunch (or all if you're feeling greedy like a rabbit) and swirl it around in the bath or hold it under running water for a few moments which creates a mountain of bubbles. Whilst the bubbles may not last a long time, it does however leave your skin feeling soft as if you've bathed in body oils which makes up for it. I find that one carrot lasts around 10 baths which means that I can get roughly 30 bubble baths from their Bunch Of Carrots which although it is pricey to start of with, it works out at 19p a use which isn't too bad.

As these are limited edition, what with it being almost Easter and all, I highly suggest that you get down to your local Lush store and see if they have any left because if not, you'll have to wait another year or so until they're released again.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Femfresh Intimate Wash

I am a big believer in keeping everything squeaky clean and as hygienic as possible such as using a different muslin cloth every morning and night to washing my bed sheets every week. As a nation, we are obsessed with keeping things clean to the most part so why isn't that the same for our bodies? A shower gel works well at keeping your arms and legs clean but is a little too harsh for our intimate parts especially for us ladies which is where Femfresh comes in. Femfresh has a whole range of products targeted directly for use for those intimate parts in particular, their Daily Intimate Wash.

The Femfresh Daily Intimate Wash has been specially formulated to cleanse intimate skin whilst helping to maintain a healthy pH-balance. As this has a low pH, it helps to protect against irritation which can be caused by ordinary products such as washes and shower gels. It has a subtle, pleasant scent with soothing extracts of aloe vera which helps provide long lasting freshness throughout the day. I've been using this constantly since I started blogging and I find that one bottle lasts quite a few months which makes it good value for money.
 *This is NOT a sponsored post.

Friday, 4 April 2014



Hydraluron is definitely classed as one of those most have skincare products which is partially down to Caroline Hirons declaring it the product to have if you suffer with dry skin or if you just fancy boosting your skins hydration levels. Whilst everybody was going crazy about it, I discovered the Lacura Aqua-Complete Multi Intensive Serum which is technically the same thing jut cheaper and not in its purest form. Whilst I do still love it and use it on a daily basis, I couldn't help but wonder if Hydraluron truly is as good as everybody claims it is. So I picked it up just before Christmas when it was on offer and I've been using it every morning and night since so I think it's time I shared my two cents on it.

Hydraluron is inspired by injectable hydration and plumping treatments employed in Swiss clinics. Hydraluron uniquely combines the world's purest hyaluronic acid and a bio-engineered strain of red marine algae causing a controlled increase in blood circulation. This increased circulation optimizes the penetration of the small particles of hyaluronic acid into the key deep layers of the skin and refill spaces formed through the aging process and thus improving skin structure.

For the record, I have normal to dry skin which is definitely more on the dry/dehydrated side during winter which means that I have to bump up the hydration levels which is where Hydraluron comes in. It is a clear gel that once massaged in, it's absorbed quickly that doesn't leave a residue providing that you don't apply too much as it will then leave your face feeling slightly tacky. Whilst I have been using this both day and night for the past four/five months, I haven't really noticed any other huge differences apart from that my face looks and feels more hydrated and that makeup sits better. I prefer applying this just before I apply my moisturiser although you can apply it before your usual serum/s and moisturiser as it is ideally classed as a hydration booster.

I have read quite a fair few reviews of people complaining that the minute that they started using Hydraluron, their skin went downhill because it has now become dependent on it. As I have been using this in conjunction with the Lacura Aqua-Complete Multi Intensive Serum, I don't think that my skin has become dependent on it so I'm hoping that when I do eventually run out, my skin won't go downhill. Although saying that, I think I will just repurchase it just for the sake of repurchasing it when it goes on offer again..

What are your thoughts on Hydraluron?

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

March Beauty Favourites

March has been one of those months where I concentrated on makeup which has resulted in discovering new and old beauty products which work together perfectly. These are all products that I reach for on an everyday basis without fail especially when I want that perfect, dewy bronzed look that everybody spends ages creating.

I've been mixing both the L'Oreal Lumi Magique Pure Light Primer with a sample of the Lancome La Base Pro Perfecting Make Up Primer Smoothing Effect Oil-Free (not pictured) which creates a more radiant appearance whilst reducing the appearance of any pores. I've noticed that my makeup lasts so much longer after using this duo, so much so that I am really tempted to splash out and get the full size of the Lancome Primer..

Despite having more than enough foundations to last me a life time, I couldn't resist asking for some foundation samples when I was at my local Lancome counter recently. The two that I got are the Teint Idole Ultra 24Hr and the Teint Miracle both in the shade 005 which match me perfectly! Whilst the Teint Idole Ultra 24Hr is more of a matte finish with a velvety smooth finish and the Teint Miracle being more dewy and radiant, the two mixed together creates the perfect, full coverage, dewy base that doesn't look cakey on the skin. I can definitely see myself spending a fortune at the Lancome counter on pay day!

As if I didn't need enough radiance, I've been reaching for the No7 Instant Radiance Highlighter a lot throughout March which is the most beautiful candlelit champagne, ivory shade. I like to apply this on the tops of my cheek bones straight from the bullet and spend some time blending and buffing it in well. This creates the whole "radiant from within" glow which has resulted quite a few compliments.

When I first got my mitts on the NYC Sunny Bronzer, I declared it one of the worst bronzers known to man and shoved it to the back of my vanity  But after trying it out again with the Real Techniques Multi Task Brush (the most perfect brush for contouring and blending!) I've fallen back in love with it again. It gives a warm glow to the face without looking muddy on the skin and with the Multi Task Brush, applying it makes it a breeze. Sorry NYC for dissing such a good product without giving it a second chance first!!

What products have you been loving throughout March?